Great minds think alike. That's for sure. That might explain how two of my favorite people on this earth came up with an almost identical idea.
My friend Megan (more like my unbiological sister actually) , is one of our biggest supporters and has almost become our unofficial recipe tester AND taster. She's also a vegetarian so our topics of conversation often involve food in some way. One day during one our playdates, she explained how one night she made this couscous and chickpea stuffed acorn squash that the kids devoured. I remember thinking to myself "Hmm, that sounds like a great idea, I have to share it with Vicky and maybe we could do something similar to post on the blog"
But she beat me to it.
- 3 acorn squash
- 2 tbsp maple syrup
- ½ tsp salt
- ½ tsp cinnamon
- 2 cups cooked quinoa - Check this post on how to cook quinoa
- 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 1 shallot
- ½ cup dried cranberries
- ½ cup chopped raw pecans
- ½ tsp salt
- ¼ tsp pepper
- 1 tbsp balsamic
- ½ tsp herbes de provence
- ½ cup shredded cheese (mozzarella, cheddar, Swiss, etc). You may also use vegan cheese
- Preheat oven to 400F
- Make sure you have cooked quinoa or cook a batch. How to cook quinoa.
- Cut off ¼" slice of the top of the acorn squash where the stem is located. Turn the acorn squash onto the freshly cut side, creating a stable base. Cut the acorn squash in half length-wise. Check out the images on the post if you need guidance.
- Scoop seeds out and rub each half evenly with maple syrup, salt, and cinnamon. Bake cut side up for 45 minutes or until the acorn squash is tender. The time will depend on the size of the squash.
- While the acorn squash is baking heat olive oil in a large skillet, add shallot, and cook 3-5 minutes or until translucent.
- Add pecans, cranberries and cook for 3 minutes, just to lightly toast the pecans.
- Add cooked quinoa salt, pepper, herbes de Provence, and balsamic vinegar and cook for an additional 3 minutes.
- Fill each acorn squash half with a heaping half a cup of quinoa filling.
- Sprinkle 2 tablespoons of cheese on each acorn squash half and bake for 15-20 minutes or until the cheese is melted.
- Making Ahead Instructions: Acorn squash and stuffing can be prepared 2-3 days ahead of time. Before serving, top with cheese and bake. Acorn Squash halves can be roasted 1-2 days ahead of time
- Freezing instructions: the quinoa mixture can be made ahead and frozen until ready to use. Keep in the freezer for up to 3 months.
- You can also add any bean of choice to the quinoa
- Would you like a shortcut: Buy a preseasoned package or quinoa, rice, or couscous. Cook it following package instructions. Stuff the roasted acorn squash halves, top with cheese, and done!
- Prep Time: 15 mins
- Cook Time: 50 mins
- Category: Dinner
- Method: Oven
- Cuisine: American
- Serving Size: 1 acorn squash half
- Calories: 292
- Sugar: 15.2
- Sodium: 468
- Fat: 13.9
- Saturated Fat: 3.1
- Unsaturated Fat: 9.9
- Trans Fat: 0
- Carbohydrates: 38.5
- Fiber: 4.5
- Protein: 6.7
- Cholesterol: 10.9
Keywords: vegan, gluten-free, kosher, holiday, thanksgiving